Twitter informed Republican Texas Sen. John Cornyn that he had interacted with content from Russian-linked Twitter accounts ahead of the 2016 presidential election.
According to an email Cornyn took a screenshot of and posted to Twitter, the Russian-linked accounts were part of an attempt to influence the election. Twitter informed the senator of the interaction as part of their “commitment to transparency.”
The email read: “As part of our recent work to understand Russian-linked activities on Twitter during the 2016 U.S. presidential election, we identified and suspended a number of accounts that were potentially connected to a propaganda effort by a Russian government-linked organization known as the Internet Research Agency. Consistent with our commitment to transparency, we are emailing you because we have reason to believe that you either followed one of these accounts or retweeted or liked content from these accounts during the election period. This is purely for your own information purposes, and is not related to a security concern for your account.”
When he shared the screenshot with his followers on Saturday, Cornyn commended the social media site, writing: “Finally social media is waking up to manipulation of public opinion by our adversaries. All of us need to step up to meet this challenge, especially the Press.”
On Friday, Twitter announced the suspension of 1,062 new accounts linked to the Internet Research Agency, adding to the other accounts they’d already tagged. In total, Twitter says it has located 3,814 Internet Research Agency-linked accounts, and 175,993 tweets from those accounts during the 2016 presidential campaign.
Finally social media is waking up to manipulation of public opinion by our adversaries. All of us need to step up to meet this challenge, especially the Press. pic.twitter.com/BuRRvUVcRP
— Senator John Cornyn (@JohnCornyn) January 20, 2018